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Museveni Renews Fight Against Giving Bail to Murder Suspects

The President urged the judiciary to address the issue of ideological differences when passing judgement on criminal cases to render justice to the victims of these crimes and to avoid the breaking of the law with impunity.
23 Sep 2021 08:05
President Museveni poses for a photo with new Judges after taking their oath at Entebbe State House on Wednesday. PPU Photo


President Yoweri Museveni has renewed his fight against giving bail to suspects accused of committing big crimes like murder. 

Speaking on Wednesday at the swearing in of new judges Museveni said bail is not a constitutional right.   

“For somebody to kill a person and you give them bail is provocation," the president said. "It is abominable. I would like us to cure this ideological disagreement. This bail, what is the hurry? Who are you trying to please? Who said bail is a right? It is not in the Constitution. We are going to work on this. I am going to summon the NRM caucus and if necessary, we put it to a referendum. With this provocation, people will take the law into their hands.”

President Museveni reaffired his position while presiding over the swearing in ceremony of six new judges including Justice Gashirabake Christopher, Justice Chemutai Tom, Justice Tweyanze Lawrence, Justice Wagona Vincent, Justice Alice Komuhangi and Justice Nakacwa Florence, the IGG Beti Olive Kamya and deputy IGGs Dr. Patricia Achan Okiria and Ann Twinomugisha Muhairwe at a ceremony held at State House Entebbe on Wednesday. 

In attendance was the Deputy Chief Justice Richard Buteera, the Acting Principal Judge Musa Ssekaana, Attorney General Kiryowa Kiwanuka and other officials from the Ministry of Justice. 

The swearing-in ceremony of Kamya and her deputies Achan Okiria and Muhairwe was conducted by the Head of Public Service and Secretary to the Cabinet Ms. Lucy Nakyobe while that of the Justices and Judges was conducted by the Chief Registrar, Sarah Langa Siu.

The President urged the judiciary to address the issue of ideological differences when passing judgement on criminal cases to render justice to the victims of these crimes and to avoid the breaking of the law with impunity.

“I am seeing an ideological problem between the way you are trained as lawyers and we the freedom fighters and then population," said Museveni. "For somebody to kill a person and you give him bail that is provocation. Justice will lose meaning completely.”

Museveni cited the case of 43 year old Akello Christine who was murdered by her husband Alal Denis in Anai Ober Cell, Ober Ward in Lira City West. Alal was later killed by a mob using the same panga he used to kill his wife. 

Museveni also cited the case of Acucu in Karamoja who returned from jail after 10 years and found his wives married to other men and his cattle stolen. He embarked on a cattle-raiding spree that resulted in counter attacks leaving hundreds dead.     

President Museveni also revealed that government will appeal the court decision to give the murderers of Case Clinic accountant Francis Ekalungar prison sentences and life imprisonment to one of them, instead of death and emphasized Uganda has not abolished the death sentence.

The President also protested the continued decision by the courts to grant bail to murder suspects saying bail is not a constitutional right and must not be used to provoke the public. 

 

“These people conspired to kill the accountant," he said. "Now one was given a life sentence, did the one they killed given life sentence? Was death sentence abolished? The Case Clinic case will be appealed,” he said.   

Mawa Muzamiru the ring-leader in the brutal murder of the Case Clinic accountant, was recently sentenced to life imprisonment. His accomplices including his wife Resty Nalunga, Yiga Deo, and Huzailu Kiwalabye received five, seven, and 25 years imprisonment respectively. 

Museveni congratulated the young team of lawyers upon their appointments and noted that the two categories of officials sworn in today the justices, Judges and the IGG as well as her two deputies could do a lot to expedite the growth of the economy that has already recovered and expanded. 

He urged the office of the IGG to step up the fight against corruption as the population is already fed up with the corrupt officials. 

“People are fed up with corruption, this is not a difficult job for serious and honest people," Museveni told Kamya. "Your offices are infiltrated, start by cleaning it up and link with the public to collect vital information. Be patient and connect with local people. Corruption is like AIDS; it attacks your defence system. CID doesn’t do its work, research people to not handle whistle blowers etc. Don’t frustrate them. The victims and their relatives are reliable allies in the fight against corruption. Link up with them.

Kamya pledged to offer motivational and inspirational leadership and said they will do the very best to ensure they deliver the mandate entrusted to them. 

“We shall pay a lot of attention to prevention and not just running after cases,” Kamya said. 

The Deputy Chief Justice Richard Buteera commended government and President Museveni for enhancing the Judiciary budget which was increased from 196 billion for the Financial Year 2020/2021 to 357 billion for the Financial Year 2021/2022. 

“This increment will enable us go a long way in bringing justice nearer to the people of Uganda: our dream, in the medium term, is to bring justice to all the people of Uganda within a walkable distance,” he said. 

Buteera added that with the increased financial resources, the Human resource challenge is to be addressed systematically each financial year starting this year with the recruitment plan of two Justices of the Supreme court, 14 Judges of the High Court, 10 Deputy Registrars among others. 

Buteera said in a bid to extend services nearer to the people, the Judiciary has undertaken a number of construction projects meant for housing court premises. 

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